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January 2023

The start of a New Year often brings a refresh of our goals, our perspective and our energy. But what happens post or even mid-January? How can we keep our motivation and momentum going well into February and beyond?

I believe there are 2 main things that help new habits or goals stick: routine and accountability. Let's say your new goal is to be active or exercise 3 times a week. In order for this to happen it must become a part of your routine, seamlessly. The key word there is seamlessly. Make it as easy as possible to include exercise within your day. There are a number of ways to do this.

Firstly, make sure that you enjoy the type of exercise you are doing, or at least enjoy the environment that you are in whilst doing it. Chances are if you say you'll go for a run in the park but then it is -5 outside and freezing rain, you're not going on that run. Go for activities that are a failsafe option for you. I would also suggest putting the activity in your diary or calendar at a scheduled time. Then it becomes part of your daily timetable and won't be missed by 'running out of time' or forgetting. Another way to make any task easier is to craft the perfect playlist to soundtrack you through it - the time will fly by! Or if you're a podcast person, save one of your favourite podcast episodes to listen to.

I also mentioned accountability. Sometimes it can be really tough to self-motivate; even when you know you really want to work on a goal, you can experience major resistance to actioning it. Talk to your friends and see if any of them have similar goals or habits that they want to implement. Then do it TOGETHER. Even just talking to someone about your goals can give them more weight. It's not just your unspoken goal anymore, other people know about it and this can spur you on to make steps in accomplishing it. In the same vein, writing a blog or keeping a journal can help in this way too - seeing your journey and progress laid out before you is a great motivator.

And finally I will leave you with this: REWARD YOURSELF. Reward the little wins. Recognise your breakthroughs, whether they be mental or physical. Your reward to yourself could be anything from taking time to have a bath in the evening, phoning a friend or family member for a catch up, or watching an extra episode of your favourite TV show. It doesn't have to be expensive or materialistic, it's for you so decide what YOU want! I will say however that a massage is always a great reward...and you deserve it.

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